Catfish & Crawfish Vegetable Gumbo


2 teaspoons blackened fish seasoning
2 tablespoons hot sauce (for fish marinade)
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup oil
2 quarts seafood or chicken stock, at room temperature
1/2 cup white wine
1 large onion, diced
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups diced fresh okra (about a pint of whole fresh okra)
1 1/2 cups (shelled) fresh lima beans (about a quart box’s worth of pods)
5 peppers (mixture of cayenne, cajun belle, and fish)
1/2 lb collard greens, chopped into bite-sized pieces
2 lbs catfish, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 lb green chile or andouille sausage, sliced into coins
2 tablespoons cajun seasoning
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon chipotle powder
2 lbs of cooked crawfish, peeled (should end up with about 1 cup of crawfish tails)
1/2 cup chopped green onions

Place the catfish, blackened seasoning and hot sauce in a resealable bag. Toss to coat the fish and refrigerate. Brown sausage in a large pot. Remove to a plate. In the same pot you browned the sausage in, Over medium heat, cook the flour, oil, cajun seasoning and chipotle powder, whisking pretty often until it turns brown, but doesn’t burn. Add the onions, garlic, lima beans, okra and peppers and saute until starting to soften and the roux has turned a light brown. Add the broth and wine and whisk until the roux mixes with the liquid. Add sausage and collards. Cook about 20-30 minutes until all vegetables are tender but not fully cooked. Add catfish and cook another 10 minutes until completely cooked. Add the green onions and crawfish tails and stir until heated all the way through. Serve over long grain rice.

My thoughts:

I was having dinner ennui the other day and Matt came up with the idea of making gumbo. I remembered that we had lima beans and okra in the fridge that I had bought at a local farm with no particular purpose in mind. He went to the store and bought green chile sausage (no andouille to be found), catfish and an unexpected surprise: crawfish. It was extra good crawfish too; very fresh. I had some wine that Dead Bolt wine had sent me to sample. It was on the sweet side, but it was perfect for the gumbo, it tempered the heat of the dish. The collards were an inspired addition as well, I like a lot of vegetables in my gumbo.

Honestly, it was one of my favorite gumbos, a dish with lots of seafood and lots of late summer/early autumn vegetables is pretty much my idea of the perfect meal.

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